A Different Sort of Aftermath


Approaching storm clouds are one thing: departing storm clouds quite another. As tropical storm Cindy moved away to the northeast, her dissipating clouds helped to transform the sunset.

(As always, you can click the image for greater size and clarity.)



Comments always are welcome.

40 thoughts on “A Different Sort of Aftermath

  1. For some reason I felt the call of music to accompany this glorious image – maybe choral?? Whatever the case glad the storm didn’t cause you grief.

    1. Or perhaps a little Erik Satie? This was a fairly well-behaved storm in terms of wind, but people east and north of us received significant rain, and there still is flooding taking place. I’m sure they’ll be even happier to see the system depart.

  2. Parts of the clouds look like glowing coals. The color was probably enhanced by the wildfires to the north and west, actually right in between me and you.

    1. The color is pretty standard-issue for our summers. It gets arranged differently, depending on the nature of the clouds, but I have a whole file of sunset-from-the-balcony photos that show an amazing range of possibilities.

      The night before was quite different — all lemony and turquoise, with discrete bands of clouds — but I was out and about and didn’t have my camera or a decent perspective, so I was happy to have a chance for this photo. Like so many great sunsets, it didn’t begin until after the sun was below the horizon, and the different layers of clouds began lighting up. Watching the changes in color and light intensity is a big part of the enjoyment.

    1. It was great fun to watch. The lower-level, darker clouds were scudding to the east (toward the right), the brilliant gold and yellow bits in the upper atmosphere were sliding off to the west, and in the background, some stratus to the north were just hanging around.

      At one point prior to the storm coming ashore, there was a 20 kt difference between the winds at the top of the Gulf oil platforms and the buoy-level winds. It’s great when the clouds help to make that visible.

  3. Clouds like these after a serious storm are sort of the nebulous equivalent of rainbows after a thunderstorm. They are lovely to see and provide additional welcome relief that it’s past.

    1. That’s a great analogy. I especially like post-tropical storm skies because the circulation can keep bringing in cloud bands in for two or three days. I wondered where Cindy had gotten herself to, and discovered she’s up near New York. The GOES-16 images may not be as pretty as the sky outside, but they’re fully as interesting. It’s amazing to be able to track a storm all the way across the country.

  4. Very beautiful photo, sunsets like this remind me I need to work on my vocabulary of colors. And Erik Satie would be a nice accompaniment. There’s a long-running radio program you’ve probably heard, “Music from the Hearts of Space,” and it plays Steve Roach, he’s also good for cloud gazing. We keep having brief bouts of lightning and hail, so I guess around here, we need a soundtrack with excerpts from Wagner or Metallica, sturm und drang stuff.

    1. I hadn’t heard of “Hearts of Space.” I went over and listened a bit, and it reminded me of my early affection for the Windham Hill label, and then Enya. I’ve moved on to other things, but Windham Hill brought to mind Wynton Marsalis, and that reminded me of another great feet-propped up, sunset-watching, Campari-and-soda song. Marsalis and Clapton just might be the musical equivalent of this sunset.

    1. It looks like Mississippi fared pretty well, too. There was heavy rain in the southeastern corner, near Mobile, but otherwise it looks fine. I don’t think anyone got wind of any significance. It’s been blowing here for two months, and more than a few people were laughing about the fact that the winds actually were down compared to what they’ve been.

      The best thing about a storm like this is that it gets the attention of people who haven’t experienced one, and who don’t always take preparation as seriously as they should. I could stand a little less hype from the news outlets (actually, I could stand a lot less hype) but if they want to wade out in ankle-deep water and carry on about the storm, so be it. It’s back to business as usual — until the next time.

      1. A friend and I were talking about ‘being prepared’ and how we often let down our guard… in the Andes, one or more of the volcanoes is often puffing more than usual.. We were talking about the importance of pure water and basic food and shelter… It can all change so fast….

        I see there’s a new storm off the Mexican coast. looks like it will be an interesting season…

        Thanks for the weather update!

  5. So much beauty in fleeting moments. It’s as if the clouds in combination with the sun ended the day with a dramatic curtain call. Surely this one was a welcome show after the departure of the hurricane clouds went on their merry way to drop rain some where else. It seems that here in Central Texas, we received some of the residual effects of the hurricane resulting, in two nights of precipitation.

    1. What a good way to describe it, Yvonne — especially since the night before there had been an equally extraordinary sunset. The two sunsets were different, but each was beautiful in its way.

      I’m glad you got some rain out of the system. You’ve reminded me that we often talk about “rain without a name” down here. Since Cindy was reclassified almost immediately after making landfall, and lost her name, we could paraphrase that old line from My Fair Lady: “The rain that came arrived without a name.”

      Here’s to a nice, long stretch of good weather.

    1. Sometimes, unexpected fringe benefits are the best. Sometimes, they’re a little harder to appreciate. Plenty of people noted the fact that Cindy made landfall almost exactly where Rita did in 2005. I suppose Rita’s primary fringe benefit was a complete revision of evacuation plans for Houston: necessary, but not nearly as nice as our recent beautiful sunsets.

    1. Isn’t it beautiful? The variety of nature is fascinating. No wave, no sunset, no butterfly, is just like any other. They may be similar — even almost identical — but they aren’t. I suppose that’s why they’re so compelling, and why we keep watching. I’m happy to share this one with you, Kayti.

    1. Doesn’t it, though? One of the commenters up above was right that it very closely resembles the way clouds reflect wildfires, even though that wasn’t so in this case. Smoke will do it, too. Some of the most remarkable photos I’ve seen are from the 2011 wildfire in the Davis Mountains, around the McDonald Observatory. Crews set backfires that helped to protect the observatory, but the photos are eerily beautiful — and terrifying.

    1. There were sighs of relief all around, Debbie, even though it became clear pretty quickly that she wasn’t going to have the time over water to develop into anything more than a minimal tropical storm. That’s ok. We’ll call it a drill, and hope that people who didn’t know where their insurance papers were, and who didn’t have any supplies are all fixed up now. There will be another one; there’s no question about that.

    1. It really does, and it isn’t only because of the storm. Summer’s our time for these brilliant sunsets. I have a small collection of sunset images; I’ll have to share a few more over time. Since I live in a north/northwest location, I often notice the light changing, and poke my head out to see what’s happening. There’s no predicting when something special will show up.

    1. I think of skies like this as confused, more than disturbed: like confused seas, where winds and waves mix it up and everything turns into a choppy mess. We’re all happy that there wasn’t any damage here, although Alabama and Mississippi and probably points north and east probably are still drying out. If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it dozens of times: it was a good practice run.

  6. That is a beautiful photo. Pink skies whether in the morning or evening have the tendency to remind me of an amazing WOW! factor despite life! Slows you down and take a moment to take in something beautiful. Reminder that we do live on a gorgeous planet :)

    1. I feel the same way. It is important to slow down for a look, because these skies change every minute. If “that special glow” suddenly appears outside my window, I’ve learned to pay attention. Sometimes, it’s just pretty light. But sometimes, it’s a scene like the one up above, and I get another reminder of just how beautiful the world is.

  7. A sunset with amazing clouds — you really can’t get better than that. Isn’t it fascinating how quickly the skies change — color and clouds? I noticed that up north this weekend seeing our first sunset there of the season. These clouds are particularly amazing. Lovely photo, Linda.

    1. The sky is a quick-change artist, isn’t it? I’ve learned to keep my camera nearby — and always to check to be sure it has a card in it, and a nice, fresh battery. A few minutes’ delay can mean the difference between a nice photo of the sky and only a nice memory of the sky: particularly if I can’t remember where in the house I laid down the camera.

    1. It certainly is. We have another beautiful sunset tonight, all pink and lavender. There’s so much variety — a new delight every day. And speaking of delights, the mallard I mentioned is doing much better. He’s swimming again, in a manner of speaking, so he at least can work his way along the algae-covered docks where the duckies like to eat. He came waddling down the dock to greet me today, hoping for a handout, but now that he can fend for himself, the treat machine’s being turned off.

    1. Sometimes heat and humidity create some real magic. This whole week we’ve had fantastic clouds during the day, too: bright blue skies, with cumulus building up and then raining themselves out. It’s better than tv, let me tell you.

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